Waipio Valley is also known as "The Valley of the Kings" and is an important site for Hawaiian history and culture. It's also a place of dramatic tropical beauty. The valley is about 1.6 kilometres across and over eight kilometres deep, and surrounded by cliffs up to 610 metres high. It was once the home of thousands of Native Hawaiians. Today, there are less than 100 residents living amongst the waterfalls, taro fields and rivers permeating the valley. Hawaii Island's tallest waterfall, Hiilawe Falls cascades down 400 metres in the back of Waipio.
You can view the valley from the coastal Waipio Valley Overlook at the end of the Hamakua Heritage Corridor drive, or you can drive down to the valley. The road into the valley is extremely steep though and requires a 4-wheel drive vehicle so driving isn't recommended (check your rental car agreement if you plan to make a trip to Waipio Valley).
We spotted this deep valley filled with the beautiful coconut palm trees while driving on the east coast of the island. It was an incredible sight, we loved the density of the forest as well as depth. Taking pictures from the bridge gave us that beautifl aerial finish which would be very hard to achieve if we took photos from the bottom of the valley.
We stumbled upon this cemetery on the way to Hilo. The huge Monkey Pod Tree spreads it's entwined branches over the graves as if it wants to protect them from the harsh sun or rain. We were mesmerised by it's size and beauty.